Monday, September 3, 2007

Green Beans, Greek-Style

I can't get clear on whether this dish is called Fasolatha or Fasolakia me Lathi (Mom? Official title please?) , but that doesn't really matter. Greek-style Green Beans is a fine working name. These green beans are stewed in a tomato and onion base. When the beans are done, they should be silky-soft, not crunchy. This dish is best served at room temperature.

Fasolakia me Lathi (Thanks Ma!)

The amount of oil is not a joke, also this is one of the few dishes where I'll use extra virgin olive oil for cooking (as opposed to regular ol' virgin oil). "Lathi" means oil and this dish is seasoned with it. My recipe uses a lot less than a "traditional" recipe would. Serves 2 when it is used as a side dish, serves 4-6 when served as part of a multi-salad meal.
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 gloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound tomatoes, peeled, seeded and minced (see below for quick tip)
  • 2 pounds green and or yellow string beans (I used both), chopped into 1-2" lengths
  • salt and pepper
  • Greek dried oregano
  • lemon juice
  • extra virgin olive oil
Heat 1/4 cup of the oil in a dutch oven or deep skillet. Saute the onions and garlic until softened. Add tomatoes, beans and oregano. The beans should be mostly covered with liquid from the tomatoes. Add water if necessary.

Cover the pan and turn the heat to low. Simmer the beans for 45 minutes to 1 hour. (Older "store bought" beans may take longer.) Check every now and then to make sure that the beans aren't too dry - add more water if needed. When done, the beans should be soft and melting, but not falling apart. Squeeze some fresh lemon juice over the top and season with salt and pepper.

Serve at room temperature drizzled with extra virgin olive oil.

Quick tip: In this recipe, the tomatoes provide the sauce. The easiest way I've found to prep the tomatoes is as follows: Cut your tomatoes in half (through their equators) and squeeze out the seeds. Using a box grater, grate the tomato pulp, keeping the skin against your hand. When done, you'll have grated off all the tomato flesh and the skin will be left in your hand.

2 comments:

Mom said...

Hi, it's Mom re the beans. Green beans with oil would be fas-o-lakia me lathi (Fasolia are dried beans of any kind - fasolatha is bean soup. Recipe looks great exept I've never seen a Greek bean cut in short lengths - always whole - maybe 'frenched' if they are very large. And you're right - in Greece, the beans are literally 'boiled in oil'! - Delicious, but oh! the calories!

Kitt said...

Thanks for posting the recipe! I have all the ingredients on hand and will try it, probably tomorrow.

Thanks for stopping by my blog, too!

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